Rising your being
There is a lot of discussion regarding the dramatic advance of technology in all areas of our society.
And the reasons for these discussions are grounded on the fact that not everything is advantageous for the harmonious development of our society since perils are being arising or losing the disguised form they initially had.
Since technology is a very broad topic, I am going to concentrate here on the Internet.
Back on the 80’s, I was first introduced to computers by chance when a salesperson approached me by saying “I have some floppy disks for sale. If you are interested, please contact me.” And gave me his business card. I didn’t know what he was talking about, because, I had barely seen some computers at school but hadn’t had the opportunity to use them.
A few days later, I contacted that salesman to find out a bit more on that techy stuff. He showed me his inventory of only 5.25” floppy disks. Their storage capacities were 160Kb, 360Kb and 1.2Mb. I was excited to know I could save information on those devices and carry it out anywhere.
Since that day, it seems the speedy transformation has occurred in a blink of an eye.
In terms of storage, the evolution I witnessed myself was: 5.25” floppy disks, 3.5” floppy disks, tapes, hard disks, CDs, DVDs, USB memories, SIM cards and now storage in the Cloud.
Regarding operating systems, as many of us, I was forced to start using Microsoft Windows. Despite, I was exposed to Corporate system, like Xenix, Unix and later Linux, I mostly used Microsoft Products starting with MS-DOS, Windows NT for networking, Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 2000, Windows ME, Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8/8.1, and Windows 10.
For this reason, I know a bit about Microsoft operating systems and, despite the critics, they have served a great purpose. I was every time more astonished by the fantastic and swift development of computer science.
However, when Internet came to our lives, the positive hallucination was more noticeable. I could say I became addicted to Internet and specially to chat rooms. The progress continued from Office applications, encyclopedias, photography, music, and everything…
Literally, everything was impacted either positively or adversely by the flourishing and consolidation of Internet.
Among many others, I would like to highlight some areas impacted:
The 7-day waiting time to develop a camera roll to enjoy our photographs was already part of history with the arrival of digital photography. Some of my friends who had traditional photography shops bankrupted by not adjusting to the imminent change.
In the past, we had to buy the whole album just to listen to our favorite song. Now, through Internet, we can find almost any song and sometimes for free. For a fee, we can get any song and with the highest quality.
This impact is really transformational especially for adults who already have a defined character and don’t need the grounds of social interaction. We can learn everything via the Internet, for instance, languages, just to mention one area; it’s amazing how practical and effective learning a language has become via a web browser, apps, audios, videos, pictures, texts, etc. There are numerous options available and the distance barrier has been knocked down.
Brick and mortar stores are still surviving but not for long. With Amazon as the pioneer of e-commerce, it’s a matter of a few years for us to see the massification of online shopping, due to convenience, 24/7 availability, variety, freedom to shop, fast delivery, excellent customer service, great quality and fair prices. These are key factors for anyone wanted to succeed in this sphere.
Until now, I have talked only about advantages. Let’s flip the coin and mention the down side of this technological phenomenon.
One aspect that has been negatively impacted has been the labor market.
Many routine activities that were being performed by humans, are now being executed by robots or automated processes in general. This has massively happened in the manufacturing, services and automotive sectors to mention just three.
This is positive for the enterprises as production costs are being reduced as well as quality and efficiency. However, for the non-qualified workforce, this implies loss of employment or just the start of a re-training program. In any case, humans are still required to inspect processes that machines are not yet capable of doing. For example, in the packaging stage of a product, it’s more efficient and faster for a person to detect a leaking container.
Another factor that I consider being debilitated by the Internet, is the face to face interaction and not through a web-cam. Each time more and more people prefer the comfortability of a bed or a couch and a mobile device to strengthen their relationships with friends and relatives. In my opinion, it’s quite boring and mentally unhealthy to have fun via social networks on a regular basis.
Artificial intelligence (AI):
When I first started to study Computer Science, one of my teachers asked this question: “May computers someday replace humans’ brains?”
The evident facts we are seeing now can answer that question with a “Yes, but partially.”
Artificial Intelligence is progressing at a high rate but still lacks the absolute power to eradicate or displace humans. Two areas where significant advances have been made are the transportation and medical fields. There are still debates regarding autonomous cars as huge transformation will be required, not only in infrastructure but also in regulations, security, insurance and political matters.
In the medical field, no consensus has been obtained regarding the creation of bionic beings replenished with microprocessors which may unleash transcendental adverse implications for everyone.
Technology has brought to our society more benefits than challenges. It’s, however, the responsibility of all of us to use it as a mechanism to continue boosting both personal and collective development.
If you have some experiences or opinions on this regard, please share them on the comments below, so we can all learn from each other.
- Are you a techy person?
- Do you agree that technology is an uncontrollable devil or a timely desired blessing?
- How can we better take advantage of the Internet?
- Are social networks really sociable?
- What do you use Internet for?